Here’s what is happening in and affecting South Africa today:
- No load shedding is expected on Monday, with the prognosis from Eskom that there is a very low probability of rolling blackouts hitting the country at all this week. The power utility says that its service has improved, with generating units returning to work, while water and diesel systems are also back up. Despite the progress, Eskom warned that load shedding could return at short notice if something goes wrong. [Eskom]
- South Africa doesn’t have an energy crisis, according to energy minster Gwede Mantashe – it just has an ‘energy problem’ that could turn into a disaster if not attended to. The energy department this week gazetted the incorrect Integrated Resource Plan, and Eskom admitted that one third of its infrastructure is broken, while it continues to drown in debt. [Daily Maverick]
- Following Helen Zille’s victory in gaining a powerful foothold within the DA once more, reports speculate that Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba might resign from his position at the city and from the party itself. Citing party insiders, various news outlets report that Mashaba told party leaders in Gauteng of his intentions to quit, while other tried to convince him to stay. He has called a press briefing to address the speculation.
- South Africans in major metros are being asked to use water sparingly – particularly in Gauteng where a heatwave has hit, compounded by reservoir shortfalls due to maintenance being done on the Lesotho Highlands Project, which is only expected to conclude at the end of November. Reservoirs are sitting at between 10% and 40% of normal capacity. [ENCA]
- Boris Johnson has been forced to return cap in hand to the EU, seeking an extension on his Brexit deal, as British parliament withheld approval on Saturday, pushing markets back into uncertain terrain. On Monday the rand was at R14.76 to the dollar, R19.05 to the pound and R16.47 to the euro.